Archive for the ‘General ramblings’ Category

It has been ages since I last posted. A lot has happened since my last post on my hometown Teluk Intan, including but not limited to new food styling and photography projects, setting up of my new food styling/photography studio, busy with my simultaneous interpreting and translation work, and of course, traveling.

Just this morning, I appeared on a morning talk show on Bernama TV (The Breakfast Club) hosted by my friend, Shah. Bernama is the Malaysian National News Agency and they run a TV channel specializing in broadcasting news, aired on Astro on Channel 502. It was sort of a urgent notice, but I happily accepted the invitation as it is definitely a good exposure for me and a brilliant way to promote my food styling work.

As it was really a whirlwind event, I didn’t even get to take any photos as I was caught in a horrible jam, took the wrong road and arrived 10 minutes later than the call time. However, I guess I did alright, as Shah is a fun presenter and we know each other quite well. The interview mainly centered around my career as a food stylist, how it got started, my role as a food stylist, and also advice to newcomers who would like to consider food styling as their career.

Shah promised to give me a CD with the footage of my appearance, so I’ll upload that when I do get it from him.

I was given the opportunity to promote my blog (which unfortunately, hasn’t been updated for a long time!) so I hope those viewers that come to my blog after the show would not be disappointed haha…

As I am writing this, I started to recapitulate the objectives of setting up this blog. As the name cookingheals goes, it has significant meanings to me. Cooking has always been healing for me, when I am facing ups and downs of life and work, bogged with personal problems or work challenges, cooking is the first thing I would seek refuge in. From day 1 since the inception of this blog, it has never changed. Old relationships have been reignited and Iong lost friends found me again through this blog. At times, missing someone can be really difficult, but cooking has given me the strength to stay on my feet and be inspired to face the world.

Let me end this post with a photo of the new studio, which was taken much earlier this year, right after I moved in. The studio is fully utilized with me creating more dishes and bakeries than before, now that I have my own little haven. I will slowly revive this blog by uploading back logged photos, some that have been shot by me and published, some which I’ve styled and shot by other photographers, and some I shot for Getty Images, and also those I shot for fun.

I hope you stay tuned and patiently wait for new updates from me! Till then, have fun and live life to the fullest!

Zesty Concepts Studio


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It has been ages since I last blogged. Many things had happened over the past 9 months or so, that kept me really busy and occupied – the renovation and moving in to my new culinary studio, busy with assignments and everything else.

In one of my previous posts I talked about the background of my chocolate crafting, that I grew up in a cocoa farm of my late grandpa. This recent Chinese New Year, I went back to Teluk Intan, my hometown, to visit my relatives, and I grabbed the golden opportunity to visit my childhood playground with my camera. I haven’t been back for about two years, since grandma passed away…

To my pleasant surprise, what greeted me at the entrance were blossoms of pink lotus flowers, the most beautiful I’ve seen in a long long time. I’ve always hunted high and low in every country that I go to, to shoot lotus flowers, and now they are just in my backyard!

In my memory, all the streams were planted with white lotus flowers when I was a little girl. I had a lot of fond memories with the streams as I used to catch fish, shrimps, tadpoles and swim in them throughout my childhood.

More surprises were lining up for me…I found out that not only some of the cocoa trees were still alive, they were bearing fruits heavily! I took all the photos I could, even the tools that my grandpa used for fermenting and drying the cocoa seeds.
Cocoa pods on the trees…the yellow ones were ripe and ready to be harvested.

Cocoa pod cut to reveal seeds. The seeds would be fermented and sun dried before being processed.

Tools for fermenting and drying cocoa seeds. The wooden box in the middle is for fermentation, the wooden stands and netting for drying. These are at least 3 decades old…

Not only I got to photograph the cocoa pods, I also managed to taste some durians (king of fruits) and rambutans (same family as the lychee). They were really yummy!

Durian on the tree.

Rambutans in heavy bunches…

All I can say is that I had a really rewarding trip back to my hometown this round. Although I do not live there anymore, it’s a place that left me so many fond memories and will always have a soft spot in my heart, I will hopefully be back sooooon!!!!

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